Arunachal: Indigenous festivals strengthen tribal roots, says CM
Arunachal CM Pema Khandu

Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Pema Khandu on Friday said that indigenous festivals are not only occasions to showcase the rich cultural heritage of the state but also an opportunity to strengthen the connection with one’s roots.

Speaking at the Solung celebrations of the Adi community at Ruksin in East Siang district, Khandu said that tribal culture in many countries across the globe has shrunk to the level of being mere tourism material, and appreciated the fact that Arunachal Pradesh still has its indigenous cultural heritage alive and thriving.

“What is encouraging is that our youths today are taking pride in their culture, voluntarily participating in festivals like Solung and speaking in their mother tongue. Our identity is in safe hands!” he said.

Khandu said that while modernity and development are inevitable, they should not be at the cost of the state’s rich and varied cultural identity.

He further lauded the Adi community for leading from the front when it comes to preserving its culture while embracing development on all fronts.

Reiterating his call for war against drug abuse, the chief minister said that the menace is a great threat to the future of youths.

He urged the elders and youths of the area to keep vigil and prevent the entry of any kind of abusive substances into the Ruksin area.

Talking about the development, Khandu said that the Pasighat area has witnessed unprecedented development in recent years.

“The Pasighat airport is functional and by this winter, work of the railway line to Pasighat will also commence. Then the rich organic horticulture and agriculture products, which abounds in the region, can be transported to markets across the country and beyond,” he said.

Khandu assured that the state government is alive to all voices of the community and youth-based organizations and that the state government is committed to incorporating these in making important policy decisions.

“Arunachal is a diverse state with many tribes. Therefore the development of the state depends on the equal development of all the tribes. The contribution of each community in policy decisions is important for pan Arunachal development,” he said. He also stated that the state government is committed to the welfare of each community and the development of each district and constituency.

Khandu, on the occasion, also announced sanctioning funds for the construction of a mini-secretariat at Ruksin.

Earlier in the day, the chief minister inaugurated the 60-metre RCC Bridge over the Sille river on the Mirem-Mikong-Jonai road while Lok Sabha MP Tapir Gao inaugurated the 22-metre RCC bridge over the Ngorlung river on the Mirem-Mikong-Ruksin road.

Khandu also informed that the aerodrome license has been granted to operationalize the Donyi Polo Airport at Itanagar and that he will be writing to the prime minister’s office to request Prime Minister Narendra Modi to inaugurate it in October.

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